A home business is the best way to be an entrepreneur without having to rent a commercial space.
Commercial spaces such as stores, stalls, shops, and offices in Kenya are a bit expensive especially if you are looking at an urban area like the Nairobi CBD.
Many aspiring entrepreneurs want to start and run a business but do not have enough capital to accommodate everything. Thus, paying for a physical store monthly or even at the beginning is a challenge.
On the other hand, some entrepreneurs have very small businesses and prefer to invest their revenues into other investments. Others are at the start-up phase and make revenues that cannot comfortably sustain the business and pay the entrepreneur.
Today, starting a home business has been made easier and cheaper. The digital space has made it easy to start and run a business online. Start a home business, create social media pages for your business, and market it. You will make sales at the comfort of your home and then make deliveries to your customers wherever they are.
Moreover, many multi-million businesses run their businesses from home and others started as a home business. So, a home business can be your starting point or a long term option for you as an entrepreneur.
There are so many home business ideas you could start this year and make money as an entrepreneur. You could run your business full-time and depend on it for a living or as a side hustle and make extra income.
However, before you settle on an idea, look at what you can and cannot do, and see what fits best with you. Consider your skills, interests, hobbies, and experience and base your business on these.
Food business – e.g. a small home bakery
You can barely go wrong with a food business for the simple fact that people will always eat. If you make good food and sell it at an affordable price, you can make a great fortune in the food business in Kenya.
How many bakery businesses for example do you think run in people’s kitchens? There are so many food businesses apart from bakeries that are run in people’s kitchens.
And if you have the cooking skills and passion, why not start your own food business in your small kitchen and find a market?
Think of it this way, you love making samosas, and your immediate family or a friend finds them really delicious. Why not start cooking them in plenty and start during the weekends and sell them to your relatives, friends on WhatsApp, or neighbors?
Or, why not sell them to your colleagues at work at a good price? With time, your relatives, friends, neighbors, and colleagues will refer you to their circles and with time, you will create a customer base.
The good thing with a home food business is that you can always start small and put in the little profit you get to grow.
Homemade goods and Handcrafted items (Jewelry, crochet items, home décor items, art, etc.)
This is for the art people with gifted hands to craft or with a good eye for a craft that can be sold.
You probably have a hobby of creating crafts during your spare time at home after work, on holiday, or at the weekends.
Maybe you are good at crocheting scarves, shawls, baby clothes, blankets, and throws. You probably love making jewelry such as bracelets, necklaces, and earrings.
Maybe DIY-ing home décor items such as planters, vases, plant holders, candles, candleholders, baskets, wall art, etc. is a hobby for you. There are so many items you could make from home. All you need is the skill, little capital for the materials, and time to create.
All you need to do is create your business pages, take photos of your craft, and put a price. You only leave your house when doing deliveries and shipping.
Another business idea to consider is soap making. Once you learn this craft, you can make a good fortune for yourself. Many people especially in rural areas are thriving in this business.
You could make different cleaning supplies such as hand washing soap, multipurpose detergent, bleach, fabric softener, and toilet cleaner and sell them at a good price. You never know, you might one day have your products in supermarket shelves one day.
Crafting is a skill you can easily learn from YouTube University and practice, and with time, you will be good. Turning your crafting hobby into a home business can earn you some good money once you find your market.
Online apparel business – Clothes, handbags, shoes
People are making good money in Kenya from selling clothes, handbags, shoes, etc. online.
You could sell new and trendy items or second-hand camera items on Facebook, Instagram, or on e-commerce sites. Know where to get your items and put yourself out there.
You could buy your items from Eastleigh and the CBD. And if you are selling second-hand items (mitumba), consider a place like Gikomba.
With such a business, you don’t need too much capital to get going. You can start with as little stock as you can and expand as time goes by.
Finding your niche market will be key in setting you up for success.
Remember this, for an online business that sells apparel, your images are important. You need to make sure your post clear images of your items and images that are aesthetically attractive.
Good items, good prices, and excellent customer service will be great success factors for your business.
Curtains and beddings (Duvets, bedsheets, Nets, Pillows,)
Another venture you could get into this year is selling curtains and beddings.
This business is very lucrative and you can easily run the business from your home. You can link up with your customers online – Facebook, Instagram. On the other hand, you can get customers from your personal circles and through referrals.
With good capital, you can easily acquire these items from suppliers in Eastleigh, Kamukunji, CBD, and Gikomba.
You could focus on selling new curtains and beddings or the alternative – second-hand items. Focus on the quality of your items because people don’t buy these items all the time like they would when it comes to clothes.
Blogging or Freelancing
Writing has created career opportunities for many individuals. And, you could create a fortune for yourself.
For example, freelance writing gives you many options from writing articles, copies, blogs, and even books including other written items.
Look at it this way, many businesses and even individuals need things to be written. From memos to newsletters, press releases, reports, etc.
Apart from freelancing as a writer, you could also consider doing transcription, and captioning.
Many individuals have tapped into freelance through platforms such as Freelancer, Upwork, etc. all you need is discipline, the ability to do a good job, and beat deadlines.
Online Consulting – interior design, legal, financing,
This is a great route for professionals and experts who could monetize their knowledge online.
Many individuals, companies, and businesses require expert help to resolve serious issues or prevent them. They need individuals that can provide the knowledge and experience they lack on a consultation basis. It could legal services, financial services, etc.
As a consultant, you can advise individuals, companies, groups, or businesses in a specific field or help them fix specific problems. You help them assess problems, offer solutions, and help them implement the necessary changes.
You could work with some clients as a long-term consultant or for an agreed period such as during a specific event, program, or project.
This is one of the most lucrative ways to make money and a good percentage of Kenyans have tapped into it.
You need good market knowledge if you want to get into this business and thrive. There are several forex trading platforms in Kenya you could trade from such as FX Pesa, etc.
Forex trading may seem complex to you as a beginner. But the more you practice, and read about it, the more experience you gain and the easier it becomes.
To learn about forex trading, consider doing a free or paid online course. After training and getting the basics, create a demo account for your practice. You will have to put in work to learn about forex trading, financial analysis, currencies, and variables that impact them.
Web designing or graphics designing
This is a perfect route for those with web designing skills or graphic designing skills.
With digital migration and businesses wanting to grow their businesses online, most of them need web designing services. Not everybody knows how to create a website and if you can, you can monetize your designing skills. However, you have to find ways to make your design stand out as the market is getting flooded.
Also, if you have graphic designing skills and can create logos, flyers, posters, brochures, etc. you could monetize that. Know what you can create, find a niche market, and specialize in that.
This business is competitive and making yours stand out from the rest will help your business survive and thrive.
The best home business depends on you in terms of what you can do, what you have, and what you want. Think of your goals, for example, a business that will give you a work-life balance, or a business that will give you a top-up income as a side hustle, etc.
And today, you don’t have to stress about customers as the internet has made it easy to link you with customers, suppliers, and even employees.
Start your home business with growth in mind and see it as an opportunity for you to start small. Take that time to invest considering you are not paying for an office space.
Think of what interests you, your goals, and what motivates you. These will help you settle on the best home business for you to start.